Death toll climbs as Cyclone Freddy slams Malawi, Mozambique
An unrelenting Cyclone Freddy that is currently battering southern Africa has killed at least 56 people in Malawi and Mozambique since it struck the continent for a second time on Saturday night, authorities in both countries have confirmed.
With war nearby, US shows support for Poland on army holiday
Polish officials are marking their nation’s Armed Forces Day holiday alongside the U.S. army commander in Europe and regular American troops, a symbolic underlining of NATO support for members on the eastern front as Russia wages war nearby in Ukraine.
EU regulator considers clearing smallpox shot for monkeypox
The European Medicines Agency says it will begin reviewing data to decide if a smallpox vaccine made by the pharmaceutical company Bavarian Nordic might also be authorized for monkeypox, amid a growing outbreak of the disease across the continent.
WHO: Nearly 200 cases of monkeypox in more than 20 countries
The World Health Organization says nearly 200 cases of monkeypox have been reported in more than 20 countries not usually known to have outbreaks of the unusual disease, but described the epidemic as “containable” and proposed creating a stockpile to equitably share the limited vaccines and drugs available worldwide.
Spanish LGBTQ groups wary of monkeypox stigma as Pride nears
With one of Europe’s largest gay pride celebrations right around the corner, Spain's LGBTQ community is worried that outbreaks of monkeypox on the continent could lead to an increase of homophobic sentiment based on misunderstandings of the disease.
Security concerns, lack of support stall Africa's Green Wall
A series of complex challenges, including a lack of funding and political will as well as rising insecurity linked to extremist groups al-Qaida and the Islamic State in Burkina Faso, are obstructing progress on Africa’s Great Green Wall, according to experts involved in the initiative.
Omicron brings COVID-19 vaccine inequity 'home to roost'
The emergence of the new omicron variant and the world’s desperate and likely futile attempts to keep it at bay are reminders of what scientists have warned for months: The coronavirus will thrive as long as vast parts of the world lack vaccines.
UN peacekeepers face greater threats from complex conflicts
The more than 87,000 personnel in U.N. peacekeeping missions are confronting greater threats today because conflicts have become more complex and are driven by an increasing number of factors ranging from ethnic tensions and the impact of organized crime to illegal exploitation of resources and terrorism.
Republic of Congo candidate hospitalized with COVID-19
FILE - In this Friday March 19, 2021 file photo, supporters of opposition presidential candidate Guy Brice Parfait Kolelas cheer during their party's last rally of the presidential campaign in Brazzaville, Congo. Guy Brice Parfait Kolelas, the leading opposition presidential candidate in Republic of Congo, was receiving oxygen at a private hospital after being diagnosed with COVID-19, a family member said. The announcement late Saturday March 20, 2021 comes on the eve of the presidential election. (AP Photo/Christ Kimvidi, File)BRAZZAVILLE – The leading opposition presidential candidate in Republic of Congo was receiving oxygen at a private hospital after being diagnosed with COVID-19, a family member said, casting Sunday's election into doubt on the eve of the vote. Republic of Congo has had fewer than 10,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began, with 134 confirmed deaths.
Vaccine roll-out gaps a core concern for G-20 countries
Indian villagers carry their belongings on their heads and walk towards their village on the outskirts of Hyderabad, India, Friday, Feb. 19, 2021. Daniele Franco told a virtual news conference after the meeting of finance ministers and central bank chiefs of the G-20 economies that a core priority for the group is “to grant equitable access” to safe vaccines. “We will not get back to our normal lives until the virus is eradicated in all countries,” Franco said. Economy and finance ministers will check in on progress on issues in July in Venice, and a global summit is planned for October. Climate change and tax policy are on the agenda for July.
Tech Time: Ann Arbor student raises 30K on TikTok to build Malawi school
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – From Ann Arbor to Africa one local student raised enough money in two months to build a school more than 8,000 miles away. The student’s mission of building the school was made possible through a viral social media video he created. I was like we should try to build a school in a developing country,” said Simon Kim, a University of Michigan student. I’m like we’re going to build a school. Once the money was raised, a partnership formed with a non-profit called Build On, which has experience in Malawi.
Biden's pick for UN post calls China 'a strategic adversary'
United States Ambassador to the United Nations nominee Linda Thomas-Greenfield testifies during for her confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2021, in Washington. Johnson asked her why she had said the United States is not in a new Cold War with China. “This speech is cheerleading for the Chinese Communist Party” and makes no mention of China’s human rights violations, he said. Johnson asked her what the stronger language and tougher tactics would be toward China. “And yet, I had an extraordinary 35-year career, that culminated as the assistant secretary of state of African affairs,” Thomas-Greenfield said.
50 countries vow to protect 30% of land and sea by 2030
(Joe Giddens/PA via AP)PARIS – At least 50 countries committed to protecting 30% of the planet, including land and sea, over the next decade to halt species extinction and address climate change issues, during a global summit Monday aimed at protecting the world's biodiversity. About 30 leaders, government officials and heads of international organizations participated in the One Planet Summit, which was being held by videoconference because of the coronavirus pandemic. During his campaign, Biden pledged to better protect biodiversity by preserving 30% of American lands and waters by 2030. Another initiative involves a new coalition of Mediterranean countries working to better protect the sea from pollution and overfishing. ___Follow all AP coverage of climate change issues at https://apnews.com/hub/Climate.
Michigan medical community comes together so 6-year-old can walk again
COMMERCE TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Michigan’s medical community came together to help a child in need. Christ Thiobino came to Michigan about 3 years ago and he was fitted with prosthetic legs at the University of Michigan. “He’s really been walking around mostly on his hands over the last several months, waiting on his new legs,” Webb said. Christ needs to re-learn how to walk with newly fitted legs. The Children’s Medical Mission Network of Ohio sponsored the mission effort.
UN chief warns `vaccine nationalism' is moving at full speed
Volunteers wait to be checked at a vaccine trial facility set at Soweto's Chris Sani Baragwanath Hospital outside Johannesburg, South Africa, Monday Nov. 30, 2020. Over 2000 South African volunteers are on AstraZeneca's experimental coronavirus vaccine trial. The U.N. chief reiterated his call for vaccines to be treated as “a global public good,” available to everyone, everywhere on the planet, especially in Africa. In the United States, the Pfizer vaccine could get a green light for emergency use in the coming days and the Moderna vaccine in the coming weeks. “There are several vaccines in the pipeline for COVAX, and it is perfectly possible to deliver if the financing is guaranteed.”
Nestle, Cargill at high court in child labor case
WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court seemed concerned Tuesday about the impact of siding with food giants Nestle and Cargill and ending a lawsuit that claims they knowingly bought cocoa beans from farms in Africa that used child slave labor. The court was hearing arguments in the case by phone because of the coronavirus pandemic. Both Nestle and Cargill say they have taken steps to combat child slavery and have denied any wrongdoing. Alito, for his part, was also skeptical about this particular case against Nestle and Cargill. Cargill and Nestle are asking the court to take another step and rule out suits against U.S. companies.
Africa CDC sees COVID-19 vaccinations in 2nd quarter of 2021
The director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, John Nkengasong, told reporters that “I have seen how Africa is neglected when drugs are available” in the past. And he warned that “it’s clear the second wave (of infections) is here on the continent” of 1.3 billion people. He cited such logistics in his prediction for when vaccinations in Africa will begin. "The worst thing we want for the continent is for COVID to become an endemic disease” in Africa, he said. It could take more than $5 billion to roll out a COVID-19 vaccine in Africa to priority populations alone, the WHO says — and that doesn't include the costs for delivering the vaccines.
Diplomats: Rockets fired at Eritrea amid Ethiopian conflict
NAIROBI – Rockets were fired at Eritrea's capital on Saturday, diplomats said, as the deadly fighting in Ethiopia's northern Tigray region appeared to spill across an international border and bring some of observers' worst fears to life. At least three rockets appeared to be aimed at the airport in Eritrea's capital, Asmara, hours after the Tigray regional government warned it might attack. It has accused Eritrea of attacking it at the invitation of Ethiopia's federal government since the conflict in northern Ethiopia erupted on Nov. 4. Eritrea is one of the world's most reclusive countries, and no one on the ground, including the information ministry, could immediately be reached. Tigray regional officials did not respond to requests for comment.
Timeline: Ethiopia's Nobel Peace Prize to brink of civil war
KAMPALA – Ethiopia's federal troops for almost a week have been battling troops loyal to the Tigray regional government, raising fears of civil war in Africa's second most populous country. Just a year ago, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed was receiving the Nobel Peace Prize for his dramatic political reforms. Abiy also shocked the region by making peace with neighboring Eritrea after a border war, and promoting similar efforts in the wider Horn of Africa. OCTOBER 2019: A NOBEL PEACE PRIZEThe following year, Abiy was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his sweeping reforms. The Tigray region defied the federal government by holding a local election, leading to the current situation where each government now regards the other as illegal.
AP Explains: Why Ethiopia is suddenly on brink of civil war
(AP Photo/Mulugeta Ayene)NAIROBI – Suddenly Ethiopia appears on the brink of civil war, threatening the stability of one of the world’s most strategic regions, the Horn of Africa, and the fracturing of one of Africa’s most powerful and populous countries. But the crisis in Ethiopia, a key U.S. security ally, has been building for months. Ethiopia is one of Africa’s most well-armed nations, and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front dominated Ethiopia’s military and government before Abiy took office in 2018. In September, the Tigray region voted in a local election that Ethiopia’s federal government called illegal. Ethiopia already was drawing concern over a dispute with Egypt over a huge dam Ethiopia is completing on the Blue Nile.
Ethiopia near civil war as PM sends army into defiant region
FILE - In this Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020, file photo, Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, center, arrives for the opening session of the 33rd African Union (AU) Summit at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. “We have to guard against ‘just another tribal African war,’” former U.S. diplomat Payton Knopf told The Associated Press. The prime minister announced “several martyrs” in the overnight attack in Mekele, the northern Tigray region’s capital, and Dansha town. The region is Ethiopia’s most sensitive, neighboring Eritrea, which fought a long border war before the two countries made peace in 2018. The TPLF dominated Ethiopia’s military and governing coalition before Abiy took office in 2018 and announced sweeping political reforms that won him the Nobel last year.
Marines remove general investigated over alleged racial slur
WASHINGTON – The Marine Corps has removed a two-star general from command of Marine forces in Europe and Africa based on an investigation into allegations that he used a racial slur during a training event, officials said Tuesday. The decision to relieve Maj. Gen. Stephen Neary of command of Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa, headquartered in Germany, was made by the commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. David Berger. “Neary was relieved due to a loss of trust and confidence in his ability to serve in command,” the Marines said in a brief written statement. A Marine spokesman, Maj. Eric Flanagan, said separately that Berger acted on the basis of what had been determined in an official investigation of the allegation that Neary had used a racial slur. The Stars and Strips newspaper reported earlier this month that the Marines had confirmed they were investigating an allegation that Neary had used a derogatory term for Black people in the presence of other Marines.
Tanzania asks for aircraft to battle fire on Mt Kilimanjaro
In this image made from video, fires burn on Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania on Monday, Oct. 12, 2020. Tanzanian authorities say 500 volunteers have been trying to put out a fire on Africa's tallest peak, Mt. Kilimanjaro. (AP Photo)NAIROBI – Tanzania's government is hoping helicopters and planes will help put out a fire raging on Mt. The fire started on Sunday afternoon in the Whona area, a tourist stopover for those climbing Mt.
Southern Africa's hunger upsurge blamed on climate, COVID-19
JOHANNESBURG An estimated 45 million people in southern Africa are food insecure, with the number of people without access to adequate affordable and nutritious food up 10% from last year, the World Food Program said Monday. Zimbabwe is the worst affected country, with its number of food insecure people expected to reach 8.6 million by the end of this year, World Food Program director in southern Africa, Lola Castro, said. We are going to see levels of food insecurity that we have never seen for many years," in 13 of the region's 16 countries, Castro said. Lockdowns have made large numbers of people unemployed, increasing food insecurity, she said. Southern Africa has faced impacts of climate change for the past four years nonstop.
In ruling, judge throws lifeline to diversity visa lottery
To be clear, there is no statutory requirement that every available diversity visa be issued each year, Mehta wrote in an 85-page ruling Friday in Washington. Diversity visa lottery winners are people who have come to this nation, like millions before, to seek a better life for themselves and their families, and to pursue the American Dream, he wrote. The judge told the administration to undertake good-faith efforts ... to expeditiously process and adjudicate" diversity visas for 2020 but stopped short of extending the Sept. 30 deadline. Attorneys for visa applicants welcomed the order but expressed disappointment that other visa categories were denied. Diversity visa applicants can finally exhale today, said Karen Tumlin, director of Justice Action Center "The diversity visa lottery has allowed for substantial diversification of legal immigration, especially from Africa, and were thankful the court is protecting that."
Zimbabwe investigates mysterious deaths of 11 elephants
HARARE Zimbabwe's parks authorities in Zimbabwe are investigating the death of 11 elephants in a forest in the west of the country, a parks spokesman said Sunday. In recent years poachers in Zimbabwe have poisoned dozens of elephants and then have taken their ivory tusks to sell them to illegal traders. We are also ruling out poachers because the tusks were intact.The mysterious deaths of the elephants in Zimbabwe appears similar to the deaths last month of more than 275 elephants in neighboring Botswana. Scientists are still investigating the deaths of the elephants in Botswana's Okavango Delta area and poaching, poisoning and anthrax have been ruled out. Last year about 200 elephants in Zimbabwe died of starvation as a result of the country's drought.
Damage from whopper hurricanes rising for many reasons
The Atlantic is increasingly spawning more major hurricanes, according to an Associated Press analysis of NOAA hurricane data since 1950. The Atlantic now averages three major hurricanes a year, based on a 30-year running average. A study by Kossin found that, once a storm formed, the chances of its attaining major storm status globally increased by 8% a decade since 1979. Such a busy period started in 1995 and might end soon as northern Atlantic waters shift to a cooler regime, he said. In addition, he said: Climate change will be a bigger driver of losses in the future.___Follow Seth Borenstein on Twitter at www.twitter.com/borenbears.
Africa begins continent-wide study of COVID-19 antibodies
Experts are eager to know the real number of COVID-19 cases in Africa, as confirmed cases and deaths have been relatively low on the continent of 1.3 billion people. Thats while Mozambique has just 2,481 confirmed virus cases. The new continent-wide antibodies study will include all African countries, but the ones showing interest to start in the coming weeks are Liberia, Sierra Leone, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Cameroon, Nigeria and Morocco, Nkengasong said. The Mozambique antibodies surveys detected the virus in all neighborhoods in Nampula and Pemba, National Institute of Health director Ilesh Jani told reporters. The country has more than 28,000 confirmed cases.
Africa passes 1M confirmed virus cases; true number far more
JOHANNESBURG Africas confirmed coronavirus cases have surpassed 1 million, but global health experts tell The Associated Press the true toll is likely several times higher. That reflects the gaping lack of testing for the continents 1.3 billion people. Large numbers of undetected cases are a danger for Africa with many of the worlds weakest health systems. The virus has spread from cities into distant hinterlands, where few to no health resources exist. Experts predict a slow burn of the pandemic on the continent.
COVID-19 pandemic in Africa is now reaching ‘full speed’
A worker walks past a freshly-dug graves at the Honingnestkrans Cemetery, North of Pretoria, South Africa, Thursday, July 9, 2020. (AP Photo/Shiraaz Mohamed)JOHANNESBURG – The COVID-19 pandemic in Africa is reaching “full speed,” the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention chief said Thursday, while a South African official said a single province is preparing 1.5 million graves. Modeling has shown that South Africa will have nowhere close to that many deaths in the months ahead. Africa in recent days has begun taking part in COVID-19 vaccine trials in the face of increasing misinformation on the continent. That's in part because local data is lacking, said Shabir Madhi, principal investigator of the Oxford COVID-19 vaccine trial in South Africa.
Tracking the Saharan dust plume: What to expect in Michigan
There is a Saharan dust plume heading for North America. Saharan dust plumes as 6 a.m. Wednesday, June 24, 2020. Saharan dust plume over the Caribbean at 6 a.m. Wednesday, June 24, 2020. The jet stream should allow for the Saharan dust plume in the Caribbean to move northward starting June 25, 2020. (WDIV)If the skies are clear in Michigan, this will allow the dust plume to create a very nice sunrise and sunset through the weekend and perhaps into early next week.
Solar eclipse wows stargazers in Africa, Asia, Middle East
A crow sits on roof of a house as the sun forms crescent during solar eclipse in New Delhi, India, Sunday, June 21, 2020. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)DUBAI Stargazers in Africa, Asia and parts of the Middle East looked to the skies this weekend to witness a partial social eclipse. It usually happens two times in a year, but it differs from location to location so its not fixed in one location. So its kind of something a bit rare to observe.The observatory also sold solar eclipse glasses to the public to observe the eclipse safely. An overcast sky didnt deter enthusiasts in India with the partial eclipse also visible in the New Delhi sky.
World Health Organization warns about virus: ’The worst is yet ahead of us’
GENEVA (AP) – The World Health Organization chief warned Monday that “the worst is yet ahead of us” in the coronavirus outbreak, reviving the alarm just as many countries ease restrictive measures aimed at reducing its spread. He and others, however, have previously pointed to the likely future spread of the illness through Africa, where health systems are far less developed. The worst is yet ahead of us,” Tedros told reporters from WHO headquarters in Geneva. Among other things, Trump insisted WHO had failed to adequately share “in a timely and transparent” way information about the outbreak after it erupted in China late last year. It’s a health issue.”“This virus is dangerous.
Meghan spotlights ethical fashion brands during Africa tour
(CNN) - Few fashion choices receive as much public attention as those made by Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, whose outfits frequently sell out after being identified online. And she appears to be using this attention to powerful ends by highlighting ethical brands and consumption habits. During her and Prince Harry's royal tour of southern Africa, which concluded Wednesday, Meghan wore a series of outfits by designers who prioritize the social and environmental impact of their clothing. Also sold out is a khaki shirt dress by American brand Room 502 that Meghan wore to an ActionAid event in Johannesburg. Other ethical labels have already reaped the benefits of Meghan's fashion choices.
American drowns after proposing to girlfriend underwater in Tanzania
PEMBA ISLAND, Tanzania (CNN) - A Louisiana man has drowned after proposing to his girlfriend underwater while the couple was vacationing in Tanzania. Weber proposed on Thursday by swimming underwater and holding a handwritten note against the bedroom windows, according to a video Antoine posted Friday on Facebook, before presenting a ring. But Weber failed to return to the surface, Antoine said in a subsequent Facebook post. "Our sincerest condolences, thoughts and prayers are with his girlfriend, families and friends impacted by this tragic accident," said Matthew Saus, the resort's CEO. The State Department confirmed that a US tourist had died in Tanzania but gave no further details.
LIVE COVERAGE: Global Climate Strike from Washington DC
Rallies to open the "Global Climate Strike" took place on Friday in 110 towns and cities across Australia, including Sydney and the national capital, Canberra. Demonstrators called for their country, the world's largest exporter of coal and liquid natural gas, to take more drastic action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Organizers estimate more than 300,000 protesters took to Australian streets in what would be the country's biggest demonstration since the Iraq War in 2003. Smaller protests took place in Asia, from the Philippines to Hong Kong and India. Climate Action Summit on Monday.
5 events to check out in Detroit this week
There's a little something for everyone coming up on the events calendar this week. MSHDA Detroit Wayne County Housing & Resource FairFrom the event description:Are you ready to buy your first home? You can also check out the Detroit at Work mobile career center and locate your next job. Admission: $25-$50Click here for more details, and to get your tickets2019 AIA Detroit Celebration of ArchitectureFrom the event description:The AIA recognizes that designers plant the seeds that blossom into stronger communities. When: Friday, Sept. 20, 12 p.m.-Saturday, Sept. 21, 6 p.m.Where: Detroit Masonic Temple, 500 Temple St.
5 events to check out in Detroit this week
There's a little something for everyone coming up on the events calendar this week. MSHDA Detroit Wayne County Housing & Resource Fair From the event description: Are you ready to buy your first home? You can also check out the Detroit at Work mobile career center and locate your next job. When: Friday, Sept. 20, 12 p.m.-Saturday, Sept. 21, 6 p.m.Where: Detroit Masonic Temple, 500 Temple St. Admission: $90Click here for more details, and to get your tickets Afro Soca Love: Detroit From the event description: The largest multicultural celebration of love in North America is headed to back to Detroit.